These crosses were purchased by Charles Austen as a gift for his sisters, Jane and Cassandra. Charles was in the Royal Navy and was involved in the capture of a French ship, and received a share of the prize money associated with this capture. He used the money to buy these crosses for his sisters.
Jane Austen used this event in her novel, Mansfield Park. Her heroine, Fanny Price, receives an amber cross from her sailor brother, William, following the capture of an enemy ship.
Jane was given the cross on the left, and her sister Cassandra was given the cross on the right.
Replicas of these crosses were worn by the actresses playing Elizabeth and Jane Bennett in the 1995 BBC adaptation of Pride and Prejudice.
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